tv Anderson Cooper 360 CNN September 14, 2010 2:00am-3:00am EDT
all available on the new 2011 lexus is. it isn't real performance unless it's wielded with precision. iaiaiaiabetes. performance and i'm worried if i lose my job, i won't be able to afford insurance. not anymore. america's healthcare reforms change lives for the better. to see how it can help you, visit us at americasfairhealthcare.org newt gingrich ignites an uproar saying president obama is a kenyan conman who tricked americans for voting for him and his secret radical agenda. so, are gop politicians rushing to condemn his remarks? is anything out of bounds these days? we're keeping them honest with our democrat, paul begala. and michael moore joins us with
the imam of the ground zero mosque speaking openly and leaving opened the possibility of moving it, he's raising money. he says he doesn't want it near ground zero. he wants it at ground zero. and later, questions about the gas explosion in california. what did the gas company know about the problem with the pipelines. and we have new incredible video of the inferno, as it happened. we begin keeping them honest with a political firestorm begun by newt gingrich, a once and perhaps future presidential candidate, calling the president in so many words, an alien, liar and conman who deceived americans into voting for him. he asked, what if president obama is so outside our comprehension, gingrich told reporters, that only if you understand kenyan anti-colonial behavior can you begin to piece together his actions? he goes on to say that during a chat session on friday, this is a person who is fundamentally out of touch with how the world works, who happened to have played a wonderful con as a result of which he is now president.
gingrich added he was the person he needed to be to achieve the position he needed to achieve. he was dishonest. kenyan anti-colonial behavior? where did he get that? well, he was parodying a cover story. incredibly, the u.s. is being ruled according to the dreams of a luo tribesman, president obama's father. this african socialist who raged against the world for denying him the realization of his anti-colonial dreams is setting nation's agenda through the reincarnation of his agenda in his dreams of his son. gingrich calls the article, the most profound insight he's read about president obama. robert gibbs said mr. gingrich is trying to appeal to the fringe. >> you i would normally expect from him. it's political season and most people will say anything and newt gingrich does to an a regular basis.
>> democrats, as you'd imagine, are condemning gingrich. but what about the republicans? tonight we reached out of the offices of the leadership, congressman boehner and kantor. senator mitch mcconnell, sarah palin, mike huckabee, we got no reply from anyone. joining us now, two republicans who will talk. david fromm and founder of the blog fromforum.com and also with us, democratic strategist paul begala. what is newt gingrich doing? is this just a not-so-subtle way to play to racial fears? >> perhaps. i don't want to go there yet. newt has said some crazy things. he's an intellectual. if you unpack that phrase about kenyan anti-colonialism. that's the first american tradition. we are a revolutionary anti-colonial people. the whole reason we exist is because the continental congress
passed a resolution that says these colonies are and of right ought to be, free and independent states. so, it's not the anti-colonialism that can bother newt about our history. he knows that's our finest tradition. so, it's the kenyan. why did he pick that instead of kansas which is where his mama was from or hawaii, which is where he grew up? my guess -- and you have to ask newt, but it's curious choice to be sure. the word "kenyan." >> alex, what about it? president obama's policies are in line with other liberals, like walter mondale or jimmy carter. there's plenty of reasons not to like him as president. there's plenty of arm chair psychologists linking him to kenya and african tribes is that appropriate? >> let's -- he has a brilliant ideas guy. at times he's not at comfortable communicating with people. he does not have that common touch. and, perhaps, he might have expressed himself a little differently here. >> you're making him sound like
he has asberger's syndrome or something. he gets out in public. he is familiar with interaction. >> it would be one issue about newt or the other. >> you think he shouldn't have said it? >> no. i think he's making an important point. if you read a book called "dreams for my father," written by barack obama, it takes your breath away. it's lyrical and poetic. there's a -- and it's really about barack obama's journey to find out who he is. he knows who his mother is but he doesn't really understand his father or the culture he came from. so, he goes to find it. and there's a phrase in there where he says, i'm trying to find the granite upon which my unborn children can stand. it's powerful stuff. and in there, he does find who he is. and it's the culture that his father came from. and at the time, it was an anti-colonial culture. it said big powers like europe and at this point, the united states, aren't necessarily forces for good and must be restrained. >> but it's one thing to write a
book about the journey to find who your father was. it's another thing to say that your father's ideas is a man who you never really met who was a descended from a lao tribesmen, are somehow basically running this country? >> well, actually, i think all of us are products of where we come from. and obama does say in the book that he found out, this is an important part of who he is. and i think that's a fair discussion to have. and for newt gingrich to raise that, you know, if it's there for obama to write a book about it, why can't newt gingrich raise the issue. >> david you've been critical of gingrich's remarks. what makes them so significant? is this a fair conversation to have? such as alex does. >> imagine that obama was the child of a irishman who had a drinking problem and abandoned him and he made a voyage to ireland to discover the story of his father and they discovered he was a pretty disappointing person and he identified more with his mother's family.
would his political opponents say, to understand him, you have to understand that he's just irish. nobody would say that. and to the extent he was irish you would say that's part of the american tradition and makes him no less american than anybody else. i think there's plenty of opportunities to oppose every idea in barack obama's head without denying that they are american ideas. they are ideas that are wrong or misplaced or not conducive to economic growth or not conducive to economic liberty but as you said in the introduction, the same bad ideas that were held by walter mondale and ted kennedy and other people of northern european descent. to make -- to make this link. and, also, to endorse this article in forbes magazine which makes the point in a dismissive way. a tribesman? that sounds so primitive. to suggest that this person is infiltrated through deception of the american political process, that's not the way we want to beat this president.
it also sends a message. and i say this as a republican, there are a lot of other people who are the descendant of african traditions. are they not welcome in our party? do we not see them as good americans? how the we send a message to them that this system we defend is good for them, too, and they are welcomed to join the party? >> anderson, if i may, there are some things in the article that i think are disrespectful and dismissive. the book is "dreams from my father." he said, in fact, david, that he's irish. he said this is an important part of him, the culture. and it's fair to debate that. it needs to be treated respectfully. but i think the other important issue here is that there's a sense that barack obama is not only a citizen of america, but he considers himself as a leader of something larger. that he has a larger world view. some people think that's a great thing because it increases the respect, perhaps, that other people might have for a more broad-minded america in the
world. other people think, no, he should cling more to an american exceptionalism that thinks america is unique and different and special because there's no place that values freedom the way we do. >> is it also -- >> but when people are saying that -- >> if we have, as we have had, an irish president, nobody would say the part of him that's irish is somehow alien to america. america is what it is in part because of this irish infusion that's formed a lot of american sensibilities and even our habits of speech. >> david, unless, of course -- someone -- >> let david finish. >> sure. >> africa is also part of america. and america -- to be from africa is not to be outside the american tradition. >> no but that's not the issue here. the issue here is that this president, himself, has said that is america exceptional? no more exceptional than britain or greece. >> but, alex, it is part of the tissue because -- >> that's what the feeling is here.
representative of something larger? >> david, in the article it implies that being from hawaii is sort of beyond the borders of the united states. paul, you've been kind of shutout on this. is this -- is there something about the -- is kenya a code word here? >> of course, it is. he's trying to reach the tin foil hat crowd. the crazy who is don't believe this president is legitimate. by the way, they didn't think bill clinton was legitimate either. they would never accept the legitimacy of a democratic president. it's beneath newt. 4 this is beneath alex. people should read this. it was a number-one best seller. it is about a search for personal identity, not for the importation of some sort of african political agenda which is what i think mr. gingrich was implying there. i think it's really -- it's sad. it's really just pathetic, as david points out. there's plenty of decent ways to attack this president. but the notion that somehow, because his father descended
from africa, that's illegitimate, is wrong. he, of course, refers back to his grandfather who he was much closer to, who served in patten's army, and was a white guy from kansas. and he grew up with his grandfather. the book is not about searching for political ideology or an agenda. it is about something much more intimate and personal, the search for who his father what that abandoned him and a pretty disappointing result at that. >> we're going to continue the conversation, paul and alex stand around. david fromm thanks for being on the program. let us know what you think. the life chat up and running at "anderson cooper 360." we'll talk to michael moore. here's some of what he said. >> mr. gingrich has a real problem. if he's concerned about anti-colonial attitudes, i have a document for him to read. it was written in 1776 by a bunch of radicals. and he probably wouldn't like them either. >> he has a lot to say about the islamic center in lower manhattan and the people opposing it.
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also, one of the most popular figures in delaware politics trailing sarah palin. john king is in d.c. with a preview of the top three things to watch out for tomorrow. john, what are they? >> anderson, let's start with the two republican senate primaries that both national parties here in washington with watching closely because they think who wins tomorrow night could determine whether the democrats have a shot at taking those seats come november. let's start in delaware. that's the race everyone is most watching. you mentioned mike castle. he has won 11 times statewide. he's a two-term governor of the today of delaware, by far the overwhelming republican establishment favorite. a moderate republican. likes to work with democrats when necessary but ahead for months he's now being challenged and this got very close at the end by a tea party favorite, christine o'donnell. will she win? she has closed the gap and she's within striking distance, in part because of a big endorsement from sarah palin and a lot of money from the tea party express. here's why republicans are worried. they say if castle wins they are convinced and most democrats agree, he'll win in november. that was joe biden's former senate seat. o'donnell has run statewide before.
and she has not won. so, this is a purity contest for republicans. the national party is worried if the tea part wins they can't pick up that seat in november new hampshire, five republicans running. judd greg is retiring. so, it's an opened seat. conservatives see an opportunity to come to washington. the former state attorney general was the early favorite. she's been challenged of late by lamontane, a conservative. several other republicans are running including one that spent $6 million. the former attorney general is the favorite. this is not so much a tea party feud, anderson. but a feud that could care over into 2012 politics. kelly has the endorsement of sarah palin in this race. mr. lamontane has the endorsement of the union leader newspaper that likes to play big in presidential politics. watch how this one goes forward. >> and the other race that's fascinating is congressman charles rangel's race right here in new york.
>> right there in new york city. his district is in harlem, an overwhelmingly democrat district. charlie rangel is seeking his 21st term in the house of representative. he normally would be an overwhelming candidate. there are five challengers into the race to rangel. adam clayton powell is the one that's favored. but there are ethic's alleges of congressman rangel, accused of hiding income and abusing his power of office and that trial is pending. charlie rangel getting last minute help on the eve of the primary from a very famous democrat. see if you can identify this voice. >> we need charlie to back to washington to work with president obama to say, yes. charlie rangel has always been there for us. i urge you now to be there for him in this tuesday's democratic primary. >> that, there, of course, the
southern twang of the former president from arkansas, bill clinton, who has an office where? >> harlem. >> fascinating stuff. thanks. back to paul begala. paul, i know you're pretty stunned by how the republican senate primary in delaware is shaping up for tomorrow night. it is saying something. if you're stunned what could you think will happen? >> you expect, in, say utah where comparatively moderate republican bob bennett got knocked off by a more conservative republican. that's a conservative state. you might expect it in alaska. i was upset by joe miller knocked off incumbent senator lisa murkowski. but delaware is a liberal state. the home of joe biden. the polling is very clear for the republicans. if they nominate mike castle, popular former governor and congressman who represents the whole state in the house, they lead by 11 points against chris the democratic nominee. they lead by 11. if they nominate christine
o'donnell, the tea party sarah palin candidate they trail by nine. so, there's a 20-point swing in this primary tomorrow. they can either nominate someone that leads by 11 or nominate someone that trails by 9. i know which side i'm on. but i don't get to vote. >> paul, people in the tea party that i talked to say it's more important to stand up for what you believe in and vote for who you believe is saying right things than for the person you think can win. >> well, god bless them. that's a valid tradition in our politics. what's curious to me about christine o'donnell as a tea party candidate, unlike rand paul, the libertarian candidate and republican. but libertarian, or sharron angle, the conservative libertarian candidate in nevada, christine o'donnell to the extent she had a name for herself, it hadn't been on these tea party issues, these fiscal issues. she has been far more concerned with more prosaic matters of human sexuality. she goes on mtv to talk about her views on self-gratification
and other icky things. i'm catholic. we're taught that sex is a dirty, disgusting act that you save for the one you love. but i'm uncomfortable hearing anybody talk about it. i have no idea why tea party people, who seem to be more secular and more about spending, want to nominate somebody that goes on mtv and talks about that. >> if she wins does it say much about the power of sarah palin? how much do you think she would owe that victory to sarah palin? >> i think this is much bigger than sarah palin. republican primaries like this one, closed, are a little bit like private clubs. only republicans get to vote. so, even if it's delaware, a left-of-center state, you can still have a very right-leaning primary. and that's what you have here. the left has the blogosphere. the right has the tea party and they're a little bit like the lines on the side of the road. you're glad you're there. they tell you how far you can go. but you don't necessarily want to drive there all the time.
i think the tea party's detriment, the liability that the tea party, is overstated by the media. tea party candidates are running ahead in places like colorado. ron johnson is running even with russ feingold. if you asked americans if you agree with the tea party, 60% say yes, and it's because of washington. this is an anti-washington election. so, don't count these candidates out yet. >> so, you think that she could still win if she gets the republican nomination? >> i think she could. but paul is right. it's much tough her a general election it's not a private club. it is a left-of-center state. and it would be much tougher. there's no question. here's what republicans say. what good would it do us to have an arlen specter in the senate? that's the way many republicans up there look at mike castle. we had to ship arlen specter back to the democrats where he was much mover comfortable. what good would it do to build a new republican senate majority around that? >> paul, what do you make of john boehner's talk this weekend
about, perhaps, not extending the bush tax cuts for the wealthy? >> you know, as one of my old bosses used to say, a hit dog barks. it tells me if i were way poker player, that's a tell. president obama went out and said republicans want to hold middle-class tax cuts hostage in order to cut taxes for the very, very wealthy, those making over $250,000 a year. like alex. as soon as -- president obama said that. boehner jumped and gave up. he says, i surrender. i surrender. that told democrats a lot. i've been talking to democrats on the hill since that comment. they feel strongly that boehner revealed that the democrats have the upper hand and they'll push real hard to cut taxes for the middle class, but then let them expire for people that make over $250,000 a year. >> by the way, paul, i didn't know you lived in public housing and were not doing so well. >> a trailer but we own it and we're proud of it. >> he borrowed that suit and tie tonight. >> looks good. >> i'll have it back by 11:00.
>> i think this is a losing hand for the democrats. first of all, there isn't anyone left in america who makes over $250,000 now, two years into the obama administration. and secondly, if you had a baseball team you wouldn't take your most productive hitters with the highest batting average and penalize them and remove their incentives. yet we want to do that in the economy. we want to take the most productive americans and penalize them. what americans are seeing, i think, is that, we want the whole team to win. we want everybody to get a good batting average. we're in one economy. there isn't one economy for rich people and another one for middle or -- >> i know a lot of rich people that aren't productive. >> paris hilton sits on her boney butt and she's not -- >> when warren buffett goes shopping for jewelry he doesn't look across the counter and find bill gates selling to him. >> this is why some people are republicans and some people are democrats. republicans worship at the altar
of wealth. they believe if you have more money you're a better person. you're, in alex's words, more productive person. >> produce more money, paul, that's all i said. >> and soldiers and firefighters and cops, we think the middle class drives the economy. that's what we think. the rich will be richer still. >> and republicans think everyone drives the economy. republicans don't think there's good and bad americans. >> republicans think that the bernie madoff economics do. >> i hear a new slogan to be pushed by paul begala. the bernie madoff elites. thanks, guys. up next, something brand new for election season. a campaign ad by the democrats, slamming john boehner. see how honest it is. not grading on a curve, only the facts. holding both parties accountable. later, michael moore, what he says about the so-called ground zero mosque. why he's calling for putting it at ground zero itself. you'll want to hear what he has to say.
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the first time in our very first political theater. tom? anderson, democratic national committee has set its sights on the man that could be the speaker of the house if the dems lose enough seat. minority leader john boehner. they accuse him of much wrong against american workers. let's take a look. >> think republicans have no plan for the economy? it's not true. john boehner opposes funding for government jobs. jobs for teachers, cops, firefighters. boehner has a different plan. tax cuts for businesses, those that shift jobs and profits overseas. saving multinational corporations $10 billion. >> tom, we posted at our website and where do viewers think that falls on the sliding scale of truth? >> as you said, they can play along with this game at home. lee says that she absolutely
loves this ad. it tells the truth in real and shocking terms. and another guy names d.j. or a gal maybe, named d.j. says this guy is so far away from the average american you can't see him from russia. that's what they say on that side but not everybody agrees with that. on the other side listen to roy. he says, this ad is a big, fat lie. republicans are trying to stop wasteful extending. dems can't run on this record of tax and spend. so, the big question here is, who is right? the democrats have some valid points. boehner voted against a $26 billion jobs' bill back in august, which passed anyway. and it helped some cash-strapped states as they had to keep some teachers, cops and first responders on the job. so, check on that. he also said, however, when he did that, that he was opposing it for the spending reasons. boehner said no one wants teachers or police officers to lose their jobs, but, he added,
where do all these bailouts end? it was all about the spending for hill. and what about this business of cutting taxes for great big companies that offshore jobs? this bill in question raises taxes on businesses with international operations. by a modest $10 billion over ten years. boehner opposed that tax increase, but he did not champion a tax cut as the democrats claim in this case. and both sides argued that their approach would ultimately save more american jobs in the long run and, of course, we'll have to wait some years for the long run to happen to see who's right on that. so in tend we threw that on the sliding scale of truth and after great consultation and consideration, we watched the big needle swing back and forth from big, fat lie to right on and it wound up at "it's a stretch" anderson, to believe all of the democrats are claiming in this commercial. >> it's a stretch, indeed. thanks.
a quick program note, we've been following the allegations of craigslist that underage girls were being sold for sex on their site and other sites. advocacy groups say it is definitely happening but the actual numbers of how much girls get trafficked online don't exist. amber lyons has been investigating the issue. tomorrow on "360" we'll show you what she found. here's a preview. >> where are we headed? >> going upstairs to the bedroom. she's a normal 12-year-old. hannah montana, the jonas brothers. she wants to be a singer. >> which bed is hers? >> this is her bed right here. >> i sleep here. >> you sleep in her bed at night? >> yes, i do. just so i can still basically, have that connection. i'm always praying for her. that she's safe. just really hurts because it's almost like i feel like somebody's controlling her. >> a mother's anguish.
her 12-year-old daughter, lured away by a pimp on her way home from school in january. and then sold for sex on craigslist adult services section and on another website, backpage.com. >> a friend of mine told me, betsy, that's how they are, i guess, prostituting. so, they told me to look on craigslist and it almost blew my mind. i really didn't believe what i saw. she was there with a wig on. she had on a purple gown. >> you're 12-year-old daughter? >> yes. >> the mom was talking about her 12-year-old daughter we'll show you what happened to her. still ahead, michael moore weighs in on the proposed islamic center in lower manhattan. first, the "360 bulletin." iran could be on the virge of releasing sarah shourd. she was supposed to be freed on saturday but the plan hit a snag. they say she'll be released when she posts $500,000 for bail.
and a deadly plane crash in south america. at least 15 people were killed when a plane went down this morning in venezuela. more than 30 others survived. no word yet on the cause of the crash. igor is a powerful category storm with sustained winds of 150 miles per hour. far out in the eastern atlantic and is expected to track north of the caribbean islands. the forecasters believe it will downgrade to category 3 storm by the end of the week. and as oprah winfrey kicked off the 25th and final season of her talk show today, anderson, she rolled into the studio, a model of a quantas jet. and told the 300 members of her audience they were traveling with her and harpo productions on an eight-day all expenses paid trip to, where? australia, in december. >> have you ever seen on "saturday night live" where heads explode in the audience?
it was like that today. >> that's my best bit of all this. people go to a level of hysteria that you probably shouldn't see anywhere except in a controlled environment like the harpo studios. >> we'll check back in a little bit for other stories we're following. ahead, michael moore has some poignant words for opponents near the islamic center near ground zero. >> if the bigots want a muslim-free zone in lower manhattan they have a problem. over 60 muslim-americans died on 9/11 at the world trade center. >> is it fair he calls all opponents bigots? i challenge him on that ahead. and incredible amateur video of the gasline explosion and fire in california. these pictures are stunning. really as it is happening from the ground. we'll show you them ahead. we'll be right back. ♪ [ male announcer ] an everyday moment can turn romantic anytime.
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tonight, the imam that wants to build a mosque near ground zero says they're looking for other ways to resolve the conflict. but at the same time, he might be adding fuel to the firestorm. they said that it is disingenuous to call this hallowed ground given all the other businesses around there. michael moore, whose film "fahrenheit 9/11,' was about the
attack 9/11 attacks, is asking people to donated money to the project. and offering to match the first $10,000 donated. moore, his last movie is available on dvd. we talked about the mosque but began by discussing newt gingrich's latest comments. >> i don't know if you saw the interview with newt gingrich, he said, and i quote, only if you understand kenyan anti-colonial behavior can you begin to piece together what president obama's actions. does this make any sense to you? >> yes, it makes sense to me in the sense that mr. gingrich has a problem, a real problem. if he's concerned about anti-colonial attitudes, i have a document for him to ride. it was written in 1776 by a bunch of radicals. and he probably wouldn't like them either. >> what do you think -- >> the whole kenyan thing about this was really -- i mean, this is injecting the racial thing. i'm a catholic. newt just converted to catholicism. this is what i mean by religious extremists. they exist in all religions. and now, unfortunately, we've got one -- we've got a number -- o'reilly, too. five of the nine justices of the
supreme court. but every religion has this kind of extremism. and i'm sad to here newt talk like this. >> i want to talk about an essay you wrote about the situation of the islamic center, proposed mosque a few blocks from ground zero. you said you don't want it built near ground zero. you want it built on ground zero. "a," are you really serious? and if so, why? >> of course, i'm not serious. i'm making a point which is that their religion, islam, was defiled by 19 murderers who killed 3,000 people. if 200 years from now somebody kills 3,000 people and said they did the in the name of this guy from 200 years ago named michael moore, i sure hope somebody will go and put a statue of me or some of my books or something, at the site where this crime took place so that people would know that my name got hijacked by these killers.
what we're building on ground zero now, which, you know, i know you're aware of this. the remains of nearly 1,100 people still haven't been identified or found. what are we doing building another big monument to commerce where we're going to conduct business. why isn't that a peace park? why aren't all faiths represented? or no faiths or any -- i don't understand why we've allowed this to happen. and if the bigots want a muslim-free zone in lower manhattan they have a problem because over 60 muslim-americans died on 9/11 at the world trade center. and some of their remains are still there. so, they are every bit as american as you are i or anyone else. and i'm tired of the bigotry. >> you're characterizing anyone
who oppose this is as a bigot. in your blog and your essay you actually kind of talk about bullies and thugs. but there's plenty of americans who aren't bullies, thugs or bigots who just feel that there's something about this that doesn't sit right with them. >> right. when martin luther king wanted to have a march in an all-white suburb of chicago, a lot of people said, this doesn't feel right. why are you doing this here? it's just going to upset a lot of people that otherwise support you? why are you bringing black people to march through a white neighborhood? you know? this is an old story for us as americans. you know, the confederates, in order to whip up hatred of lincoln, put out this rumor that he was a catholic because that was really a bad thing back then. and when fdr did all of the great social programs he did, his opponents said that he was a jew. in fact, they had a name for him, "jewsovelt." this kind of antagonism and bullying and lying about people,
has been going on for as long as this country -- and it makes me very sad. >> this was supposed to be a project that would bring various religions together, sort of evolved into this. at this point given the sensitivity and emotion over it, isn't that kind of impossible? even the imam now says that had he known there was going to be this uproar he wouldn't have done this. >> well, i think he said he wouldn't have done it this way. i hope he doesn't back down. i hope he still builds it. i really support it. most good-hearted americans support it. i got to they do. even though the polls show something else. >> michael moore, thanks. we'll have new video that captures the instant the gas line exploded in california, leaving a neighborhood in ruins. the pictures are shocking. the state utilities are under investigation. new questions about the deadly fire ahead. oh, it's not just today. with our free loyalty program, you earn great stuff like accident forgiveness and bigger discounts just by staying with us.
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answers and accountability. that's what residents of northern california town blown apart by last thursday's deadly gas explosion are demanding. look at this newly-released amateur video taken moments after the blast. you get a sense of the enormous size of the fireball destroys dozens of homes, killed four people and injured 60 others. tonight, the search continues for four other people still missing since the inferno erupted. the utility company at the center of the investigation. pacific gas and electric said it
will spend $100 million to help rebuild the neighbor. look at before and after images from google earth. house after house on one block just gone. on the right is what the scene looked like after the explosion, homes reduced to ash and rubble there along with the striking images, new information the utility was warned about an old line that posed a high risk. ted rowlands investigated. >> reporter: this gas station surveillance video shows the first moment of last thursday's explosion. watch closely as the man in the red vehicle gets out. first, you can see chunks of asphalt and debris. and then, a massive wall of flames shooting into the sky! within seconds, the fire grows larger and a woman carrying a baby runs across the street, away from the flames. while others seem attracted to the blaze. some actually drive towards the fire. nobody knew what was going on. >> my first thought is the plane went down. okay? and i run up halfway down there. the fire was pretty bad. >> reporter: across the street inside this grocery store, people said they first heard a strange hissing sound.
and now watch as the sliding doors push in from the explosion. watch it again in slow motion the store quickly turns to chaos. people start running away from one of the exits while others desperately try to get out of the store. still unanswered, what caused this massive explosion? many people here are getting impatient waiting for answers. >> my kids play at the park that is now melted. these are neighbors. the woman down the block welcome my dog played with her dog and she's dead. it's not fair. >> reporter: the investigation is centered on this section of pipe which was installed in 1948. did the gas company, pg&e, miss warning signs that something was wrong before the explosion? several people in this neighborhood say in the days leading up to the explosion, they smelled gas. one person even said he saw and talked to a pg&e crew about a gas leak. but pg&e says, according to
their records since the month of july, they've only been here twice. >> in one instance there was a small leak at the meter, which we replaced. fixed it right away. in the second instance there wasn't a leak found anywhere. >> we may never know if there was a second leak and if so, whether or not it was a associated with the explosion. the pipe itself was last inspected in march. keeping them honest, we asked for the results of that inspection. but we were told they couldn't be provided because of an ongoing investigation. we got the same response as a press conference. >> that is part of the ntsb investigation. and i really cannot share the findings of that particular assessment. >> reporter: pg&e is taking responsibility, setting up a $100 million fund for victims. this week they plan on giving everyone whose home was destroyed up to $50,000, no strings attached. they claim it's the right thing to do. what is still unclear is what pg&e may have done wrong and whether there's a chance it could happen again. >> ted, this story makes us think about gas lines near our home.
i have no idea about this kind of stuff. what do we know about the condition of other old lines in california and, frankly, around the rest of the country? >> well we know for sure that there are a lot of old lines. a lot of these major lines went in the '50s and '60s and before that. and what has happened since then are buildings and homes and neighbored have been on top of high-transmission lines that were never expected to be there. here in california, the california public utility commission which oversees pg&e, have ordered pg&e to inspect every line in the state and a lot of people think every line in the country should be inspected in light of this accident. >> ted, thanks, appreciate it. next, helping the homeless of the hamptons. one man with one simple idea, trying to change all that. [ dr. banholzer ] every once in awhile
there's a moment where everything comes together. where there's magic. and you now understand what nature's been hiding. ♪ at dow we understand the difference between innovation and invention. invention is important. it's the beginning. it's the spark. but innovation is where we actually create value for dow, for society, and for the world. ♪ at dow, we're constantly searching for how to use our fundamental knowledge of chemistry to solve these difficult problems. science is definitive. there is a right answer out there.
[ male announcer ] the same 117 elements do the fundamental work of chemistry. ♪ the difference, the one element that is the catalyst for innovation, the one element that changes everything is the human element. ♪ in an area of long island, new york, known for glitz and glamour, there are thousands going hungry. deb feyerick shows us one man who is doing something to change that. >> reporter: the east hamptons
are known for their luxurious living. this man knows a different side. after retiring, he and his wife moved east from manhattan, to live in a home they built 30 years ago. to keep busy, he began volunteering in the area. and realized not everyone was healthy. he along with two partners, founded food pantry land. their sustainable crops help feed thousands of locals. >> toe grow as much vegetables as we can. >> reporter: they produced 19,000 founds of vegetables last year. and are track to produce 25,000 pounds this year. >> the thought of someone needing food and you have a method of produszing it, it's satisfying. you know you can do it.
it takes a little time. >> reporter: although, he has help from volunteers, he works on the farm seven days a week. he says it keeps him young. >> i enjoy planting. i enjoy harvesting. but the most delight comes when we deliver the food to the different pantries. >> reporter: he delivers his produce do four east end food pantries, with a fifth to come. 35 boxes of vegetables are going to the east hampton food pantry, where the need is high. she says donated produce is invaluable. this year, the pan tray has fed more than 27,000 people. >> it's a tremendous help tos. we're still seeing 200 family a week. the need is so great? the area. i think